WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats on Wednesday predicted that Obamacare would not be a problem for their Democratic colleagues facing re-election this year.
“Over the next several months, the ACA is going to become less important as a Republican campaign issue,” said New York Sen. Chuck Schumer at a press conference, “because more and more Americans, from young adults all the way up through seniors, are realizing the benefits it has to offer.”
“In addition,” he added, “the parade of horrible stories trotted out by the haters of this bill have proved not to be true.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made a similar claim on the Senate floor Wednesday morning, saying “all” of the “horror stories” told by Republicans were “untrue.”
Democrats facing re-election in November, particularly those in red-leaning states, are being bombarded with attack ads about the health-care law, both from their opponents and from outside groups like Americans For Prosperity.
Still, freshman Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy said his colleagues should not try to distance themselves from the law.
“I hope Democrats learned from 2010. I think there were a lot of Democrats who tried to pretend that the Affordable Care Act didn’t exist in 2010; they paid a price at the ballot box,” he said.
“You know, there’s no mistaking the fact that the vast majority of Americans do not want the Affordable Care Act repealed, they want it implemented and they want to see it work for them,” he went on. “And so I can’t speak on behalf of my other colleagues, but I think you see a very different way in which Democrats are talking about the act this year compared to 2010. Democrats are proud that they voted for it, there are many that are going to offer and suggest changes, but our effort is trying to make clear that now, four years into implementation, we’re really starting to see in real terms the benefits.”
The comments were made at a press conference kicking off a concerted effort by Democrats to tout the successes of the healthcare law in order to push back on Republican efforts to repeal it.
Both Schumer and Murphy represent solidly blue states. Neither one faces re-election this year.